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Myth-busting book about mental illness
Reading Asylums in a shattering and moving experience. Written by Erving Goffman, the book details the dead-end domain of those unfortunate to be locked away in "the prisons of the world" aka mental institutions, prisons, psych wards, boarding schools, army boot-camps, or nursing homes. The damage he uncovers is heartbreaking. What is feels like to be a prisoner in these secret worlds is examined down to the tiniest details.
It's less of a confessional of horrific conditions but a sociology manifesto for the curious reader who likes to "go undercover" to discover why nurses in psychiatric hospitals have trouble finding employment doing anything else (hint: it has something to do with drawing blood). The book concludes with a conceptual breakdown, where with alarming speed Goffman examines psychiatry and its role in actually creating mental illness in this country. Although the writing is antiquated and the prose dusty, the facts Goffman unearths are crystal-clear.
Posted December 3, 2003
Very informative book about the macro-institutional systems. Covers numerous institutions and is very easy to follow and comprehend, unlike a Marx or Weber book. Highly reccomend to any student of Sociology.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.